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Grants and Funding for Farm to School Projects

Most successful farm to school projects are made possible with grants and community-based funding, at least in the start-up stages. The grants on this page may be useful to get you started. These are mostly from national sources and may be highly competitive.

We recommend that you start by seeking local sources of funding and in-kind support for your farm to school projects. Several stellar Washington projects work by creatively using school budgets and partnering with community members and businesses for donations and grant support.

Please note that this list is gathered as a service to help you learn what’s available. It is not exhaustive, and inclusion on this page should in no way be considered an endorsement by the State of Washington or the Department of Agriculture. Due to funding limitations, this listing may not be up-to-date.  If you know of other grant programs we should consider, please send them to us at farmtoschool@agr.wa.gov

Healthy Kids, Healthy Schools Grants
Sponsor:  Washington State through Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction
Award Package:  Maximum of $200,000 per public school district application
Number of Awards:  Dependent upon applications
Who qualifies:  Washington State public K-12 school districts
Application deadline:  September 27, 2018
Full details, criteria and application
[external link]

School Breakfast and Game On Grants
Sponsor: Action for Healthy Kids
Award Package:  $500-$3,000
Number of Awards:  1100
Who qualifies:  Public K-12 schools or school districts
Application deadline: April 6, 2018
Full details, criteria, and application

Toolbox for Education Grants
Sponsor:  Lowe's Charitable and Education Foundation
Award Package:  $2,000-$5,000
Number of Awards:  Up to 1,000
Who qualifies:  Public/charter K-12 schools, or non-profit parent group associated with a public/charter K-12 school.
Application deadline: August 6, 2018
Full details, criteria, and application

Clarence E. Heller
Sponsor: Clarence E. Heller Charitable Foundation
Award package: $5,000-$600,000
Who qualifies: environment and health programs
Annual application deadline: August 1, 2018
Full details, criteria, and application [external link]

Project Produce Fruit & Veggie Grants
Sponsor: Chef Ann Foundation
Award Package: $2,500
Who qualifies:  Public K-12 schools or school districts participating in the National School Lunch Program
Application deadline: None - awards made on a rolling basis
Full details, criteria, and application

Farm to School Apple Program
Sponsor: Organically Grown Company
Award package: Varies
Number of awards: Varies
Who qualifies: Non-profit organization, (501(c) 3) a public school or school district
Annual application deadline: None - awards made on a rolling basis by participating retail stores
Full details, criteria, and application [external link]

The Bullitt Foundation
Any theory of sustainable development must be grounded in an understanding that the human economy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the natural environment. Sustainable human institutions and enterprises will be based on the same ecological principles that govern all ecosystems. The Foundation looks for high risk, high potential payoff opportunities to exert unusual leverage. It has a special interest in demonstrating innovative approaches that promise to solve multiple problems simultaneously.
Full details, criteria, and application
[external link]

Neighborhood Builders and Local Heroes Programs
Sponsor: Bank of America
As part of the Neighborhood Excellence Initiative (NEI) program, local bank and community leaders identify the organizations best positioned to address critical issues facing their neighborhoods. Working with community partners, the Foundation developed NEI to provide each of the 45 participating markets with essential support through three key programs.
Full details, criteria, and application  [external link]

Pacific Northwest Community Grants
Sponsor: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and partners
Award package: Open
Who qualifies: community organizations serving the needs of low income children and families
Annual application deadline: Open
Full details, criteria, and application [external link]

Specialty Crop Grant Program
Sponsor: WSDA
Award package: Varies – up to $250,000
Number of awards: Open
Who qualifies: projects that enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops.
Annual application deadline
Full details, criteria, and application
[external link]

Past Grants

United Fresh Start Foundation Community Grants Program
Sponsor: United Fresh Start Foundation
Award Package:  Up to $2,500
Number of Awards: 10 or more
Who qualifies: Not-for-profit organizations
Application deadline: April 20, 2017
Full details, criteria, and application

"Blend the Rules" Mushrooms in Schools Contest
Sponsor: Mushroom Council
Award Package:  $1,500-$5,000 or mushroom growing kits
Number of Awards:  6
Who qualifies:  Public K-12 schools and nutrition staff
Application deadline: April 20, 2017
Full details, criteria, and application

USDA Farm to School Grants
Sponsor: United States Department of Agriculture
Award Package: $20,000-$100,000
Support Services, Planning, Implementation, and Training Grants, each with different eligibility (some for schools, others for partner organizations)
Application deadline: December 8, 2017 for FY2018
Full details, criteria, and application [external link]

Healthy Kids-Healthy Schools
Sponsor:  Washington State through Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction
Award Package:  Maximum of $200,000 per public school district application
Number of Awards:  Dependent upon applications
Who qualifies:  WA State public K-12 school districts
Application deadline:  Currently closed
Full details, criteria and application

 

Tools

Foundation Center [external link]
The Foundation Center is the most authoritative source of information on private philanthropy in the United States helping grantseekers, grantmakers, researchers, policymakers, the media, and the general public better understand the field of philanthropy. The web site is designed to guide you quickly to the information you are looking for—instruction on funding research, help with proposal writing, tools for locating prospective funders, news and research on the field, or a library or training class near you.

Grants.Gov [external link]
Grants.gov is a central storehouse for information on over 1,000 grant programs and provides access to approximately $500 billion in annual awards. Grants are available for small businesses, educational and government organizations.

Last Updated: 6/26/2018